Sunshine Day conference March 17

Securing a future for dialogue on open government:

The schedule for the one-day conference will include:

•11:30 a.m.: Welcome, lunch and keynote address (NCOGC President Rick Willis will provide the welcome, and University of North Carolina System President Tom Ross will deliver the keynote)
•1 p.m.: Covering university trouble and contending with FERPA
•2 p.m.: Access to local government records
•3 p.m.: Using the new state personnel law

Waker Andrew Brock thinks Alcoa is more important than UNC TV

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To the few remaining North Carolinians who actually care about an informed electorate, it's time to bend over and kiss your collective asses good-bye, along with UNC-TV.

Senator Andrew Brock, the dickhead who founded Mary Kay Politics, is holding public television hostage because it questioned the rights of private companies, in this case Alcoa, to own North Carolina rivers.

The Yadkin River runs through the district of Republican Sen. Andrew Brock, who supports Alcoa's use of the river. He was confounded by the network's coverage last year. "We need them," he says of UNC-TV, "but we need assurances that they can't have the people who control their budget telling them to run a piece that was paid for by the opposition. We need assurances that won't happen again."

Handguns for Schizophrenics

From the Des Moines Register:

A snafu during a legislative debate where a microphone was turned on captured banter between two Iowa GOP leaders, who also joked about a “give-a-handgun-to-a-schizophrenic bill.”

Republicans this week revived a proposal that would allow Iowans to carry weapons in public without permission from a sheriff, without background checks and without training requirements.

The legislation, House Study bill 219, is known as “Alaska carry,” which is law in Alaska, Arizona, Vermont and Wyoming. Rep. Erik Helland, R-Johnston, is listed as one of the three legislators on a subcommittee assigned the bill.

Behold.

Transcript after the jump.

Earthquakes and climate change

In September of 2009, just after back to back earthquakes in Samoa and Indonesia, I wrote an article entitled "Climate Change: A whole lot of shaking going on" where scientists have theorized that earthquakes are increasing due to an unlikely cause: Climate Change.

The theory is that while earthquakes on different tectonic plates do not cause others to occur, for instance the Samoan and Indonesian quakes happened within one day of each other, they can be correlated to other quakes and seismic activity, specifically to 'glacial quakes' caused by fast melting and moving multi-ton glaciers on Greenland.

Ballot access law survives challenge

3rd party hoop-jumping will continue:

North Carolina's highest court on Friday upheld a state law that forces minority political parties to collect thousands of signatures before election ballots lists their candidates.

The state Supreme Court ruled that the law does not unfairly burden third-party candidates who want to join Republicans and Democrats on ballots.

I'm having trouble deciding if this is good or bad. What say you?

Facts at your fingertips from NPP

Via email

National Priorities Project (NPP) provides you with the numbers you need to keep your readers informed.

President Obama’s proposed $3.7 trillion budget for Fiscal Year 2012 includes cuts and increases for many state-level grants and assistance programs. For instance, North Carolina will receive 64.33% less funding for Drinking Water State Revolving Fund, while funding for the Airport Improvement Program will increase 49.11%.

For other numbers like these, as well as real dollar amounts, see our fully-downloadable data table.

Colonist or royalist?

It's what every American should be asking themselves this week. The Tea Party too.

Do you stand with the modern-day British East India Corporations and their masters (the Kochs, the Olins, the Bradleys and other royals that want to unmake the American Century and rig American democracy like they rigged the financial markets)? Or do you stand with the people in your community? Who do you serve?

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